Reliable (Instinctive, Combined)

Reliability seeks predictability in a partner to offset our internal chaos or confusion. Whenever we emerge from a situation where we had no control and where chaos prevailed, there is always a desire for a person to provide an environment that is more reliable or consistent. This is why Distant Defense Style individuals need Reliability on a large scale to feel comfortable and safe. If we are unfortunate enough to have had partners who were not reliable and consistent, we could also develop an appetite to have something different. While our first impulse is to find people who can create a sense of Reliability in us, there are some individuals who work to create their own Reliability by carefully organizing how they interact with others. We can identify this pattern when we need others to meet our Expectations and impose strong role-playing upon them to meet our needs.

Whenever we are repressed and have been denied a reliable environment, we can either give up this need or seek to establish clear rules and force others to conform to these rules. Sometimes we can even go back and forth whenever a Desire or a Fear becomes too much. Most individuals are not consciously tracking what is going on internally which may appear that we are alternating between trying to be Sexy or trying to be Smart. This is the unconscious stage of developing more Reliability. Another indication of this is an inability to accept what we have, and either reject it out of hand, or continually sabotage the possibility when it comes up. Some individuals call this having “too high a standard”, which makes relationships difficult to choose. This makes decision-making impossible and we end up consulting everyone about what we should do. As a result, the continuum of choices between unpredictable and completely predictable, we end up choosing individuals who will not make us wrong. This default choice eventually gets us in trouble if we have any desire to grow.

Reliability, stability, and consistency are Instinctive Attractions that reflect how we want to avoid partners who insist on any kind of change. The key is whether or not a partner seems familiar and safe to us. The question is, can we count on our partner or not? The more we are attached to our partner, the more it requires us to trust them, which is usually related to their degree of Reliability and commitment. Some individuals become attached to proving their integrity and loyalty by staying in any situation. This is their version of believing that Reliability equals duty. We most seek to avoid being abandoned unexpectedly when things get tough. Therefore, we seek out examples where our partners needed to deal with an adverse situation over a period of time to know that they will not run away. Another great indicator is if they are willing to tell us their problems without making a big deal about them. This gives us confidence that they can be trusted, especially if they do not turn around and use the information we give them against us.

Our attraction to reliable partners is usually because we have experienced unreliable partners. The more we are disappointed by another’s ability to respond to us, the more we seek someone who will, at least, pay attention and engage us. The opportunity is to not be polarized between Sexiness and Smarts so we can actually appreciate individuals that are simple and yet direct in their intentions. While we do not want naïve individuals, we do seek a partner who can respond by providing the basics of what we need. Until we are able to receive this acknowledgement that we deserve to be supported, it becomes an issue that haunts us. One way of increasing our capacity to accept support is to build our own internal Self-Esteem (by honoring our Intelligence) or Self-Respect (by seeing the Beauty and potential in our connectedness). The more these two become balanced and we appreciate the ability of others to respond to us in a real way, the easier it will be to believe we deserve a personal connection with others that works.

When we are repulsed by Reliability it is because so-called Reliable individuals have let us down before. It can also represent our angst about choosing individuals on an Instinctive level that has actually been dangerous for us. In such a situation, we get trapped not wanting a partner who is too beautiful or gets too much attention. Instead, we seek a partner where we get the attention and they are considered dull in comparison to us. Of course, if we have really been hurt by a relationship we may just give up wanting to have one. Usually this is framed as “Relationships are much more difficult than they are actually worth” or, “They are too volatile to count on”. This is why many of us see Reliability as making us feel safe while being repulsed by the idea of chaos and change as making us feel unsafe. What we need to understand is that Reliability is not a judgment about how good or bad a partner is, but whether an individual has a consistent way of relating to us where we can count on them. When we have this experience we come to trust the process we are in with others. It should be noted that it’s not about commitment to an outcome that makes Reliability seem real. It is actually the reasoned ability to work out problems in a way that we are increasingly confident that we do so without compromise, pain, fear or complaint. What we want to experience is a creative process where our partner flows with us because they trust our commitment to ourselves.

In the diagram we can see four ways to develop reliability as an attraction. The first is to be repulsed by inconsistency. When a partner does not follow through on their agreements, or we cannot count on them, we soon give up on trusting what they say. This leads to further isolation because it is likely our partner will only trust us to a limited degree. One of the most difficult things to accept is that we may not be consistent within ourselves because of our conditioning and past traumatic experiences.

When we are fragmented on a Personality level, and fear comes up because of certain circumstances, it is easier to shift from one sub-personality to another, rather than to confront the fears we possess. While this internal shifting may not be conscious to us, our partners will notice it and attempt to verify what is going on. What they seek is a better understanding of why we become erratic and unpredictable in certain situations. If we are not able to resolve these inconsistencies to their satisfaction, they may leave us as friends or partners.

One answer to various perceptions of inconsistency is to work on appearing consistent. This externalized reliability position is based on the premise that what looks consistent, must be consistent. It is based on intellectual analysis of how we organize our Thoughts to make everything appear consistent and unchangeable. Whenever someone challenges our consistency, we remake our reality by denying their experience is real. It is easier to sow doubt in other rather than change anything within us. We then seek to repair our persona so that those inconsistencies will never appear externally again. We also attempt to convince others that we are reliable and will show up as we promise, no matter what. We create consistency through contingency plans where our future is completely mapped out and we can explain it to others in detail. The problem is that we are not very clear or stable emotionally which means we have to shut down our emotional interactions that exceed a certain instability level. We call this establishing a perimeter defense. This is why some people get so upset when others do not follow through or do what they say they will do. Of course, we are attracted to individuals that have manifested and internalized inner reliability because this is what complements us.

When we operate based on internalized reliability we operate within a larger context that has both consistency and extreme flexibility. Instead of having an intellectual structure to guide our consistency, we operate in an emotional framework where having certain consistent themes and tones (similar to creative jazz riffs) replicate those experiences and give us clarity about ourselves. What this framework does is open doorways for creative expression without needing to be defined in a rigid way. The upside of this process is that there is internal consistency with our partners or friends in conversations that reveal our consistent motivations, skills, or lessons. The more inquisitive a person is about what is going on with their partner in this position, the more they come to understand why it is happening the way it is. The downside is that any unresolved, inconsistent areas are not likely to be addressed any time soon as they reflect an evolutionary, spiraling, and cyclical process not based upon time. While these two positions are polar opposites, they tend to emphasize co-dependent tendencies when we choose partners opposite to us. If we were with individuals with our same pattern, it would enable us both to grow faster and take responsibility for our own issues.

Balanced reliability is where we include and operate from a singular Intent. Instead of being polarized by Content and Context, it then becomes an open exploration of what is needed to bring things together. Balanced reliability operates from the sense that, together, there may be greater beauty in our connection than not. The more conscious we are about being in Aliveness, the more we honor our Life energy and our partner’s and therefore, maintain a clarified Intent to work together, rather than being in isolation. Otherwise, we are experiencing only Excitement with our partner which actually separates us and keeps us from working together. Alignment unifies us and we learn how best to serve our partner by meeting them where they are. In this way, Reliability becomes about being responsive to others. When outer reliability, based on knowing and doing, meets inner reliability based on Feelings and Emotions, we experience Passion. Here the Power of our mutual Intent transcends our safety and previous attachments to physical personal needs. This shift from needing others to confirm our connection, to serving others by consciously manifesting our connection to them, occurs through the process of Transmutation.

Lessons of Reliability

The more we find ourselves in adversarial or complementary attractions, the more we tend to use Reliability as a safe way to feel connected to others. What we need to appreciate is that having a partner who is reliable is a positive choice. We do not need to project this need onto others if we naturally attract individuals who are Reliable. Reliability is the center point of Creative relationships, which naturally emerges based on a balanced bonding of Sensations and Feelings. This means that when we begin to show up and be truly present with our partner, they will naturally do the same with us (if they are tuned in). We can validate this by our sense of creative flow, cellular affinity, and Aliveness we experience with them. We will know this is not occurring if they are repulsed by beauty, unable to relax, or objectifying us or even their self. What Reliability tends to do is build a balanced connection where we know we have a partner that will back us up.

Gender Identity Confusion

On the instinctive level (see Sensations Reinforce Unconscious Attractions) we use smell, sight, and sound modalities to reinforce Excitement. This is why seducers pay attention to perfume/cologne, visual stimulation, and speaking “sweet nothings” to distract their partners from their true experience. On the intellectual level, we use taste, reinforced by a sensory framework of discrimination, where we explore cravings and the value of appetite. This quality orientation reinforces internal and external Intensity though constant comparison, where we seek out “the best and eliminate the rest.” On the idealized level we use touch reinforced by our partner’s inner longings, particularly envy or avarice and comfort and ease. The more we compromise our self to care take our partner, the more we become repulsed by our own inner resentment. On each level, sensory triangles are frameworks that coalescence our distorted perception of unconscious attractions. These sensory distortions provide the reasons why Excitement, Intensity, and Repulsion seem to be the fulfillment that we are seeking. These experiences are self-involved and absorbing, but not ultimately fulfilling.

On the instinctive sensory triangle is smell, which unifies both feminine (auditory) and masculine (visual) senses. Scent is one of the most involved senses. Perfumes and cologne only superficially cover up our natural scent. Pheromones, arising from our natural sweat communicate the degree of fear we carry within a radius of 80 feet. What we actually seek (using pheromones) are individuals with the same degree of fear because it is the safest. Voice is also a strong stimulus because of past associations we have had with individuals having a particular tone and quality that we consider attractive. Finally, our visual associations with past real or imaginary partners is a huge stimulus, particularly for men. This sensory triangle powerfully reinforces our Excitement (when we experience positive associations) and maintains our interest by increasing and using these cues to support internal fantasies. This sensory involvement minimizes our Aliveness and ability to engage others consciously.

Excitement over-focuses us on the instinctive level because we rely on the possession and objectification of our partners to solidify our connection. We become over involved when instinctively the masculine externally relies upon sight and visual appearance to invoke the experience of physical closeness. On the other hand, the feminine externally relies upon hearing, speech, and sound to evoke an experience of Feelings or emotional closeness. To the degree we are embodied within a masculine approach, we learn how to use our voice to evoke in our partners the softness and nurturing they seek to contribute to the relationship. To the degree we are embodied within a feminine approach, we learn how to invoke, through physical appearance, interest from others. We can see that we each use varying degrees of masculine and feminine energies on different levels that are not fully understood and appreciated, given our current social and cultural expectations. We can validate this theory by how, at the instinctive levels, men are more defined by visual stimuli (such as pornography) while women are more defined by aural stimuli (represented by romance novels, where a woman savors the internal dialog). This does not mean that all women or men operate this way, just that there are different modalities of perception that are used when we operate in a masculine or feminine manner.

On the intellectual level the sensory triangle is taste, which unifies both feminine (appetite) and masculine (craving) qualities. Taste reflects the ability to increasingly discriminate the highest from the lowest. We get caught up in taste, appetite, and cravings when our Wisdom or Passion is repressed. This opens the door for Intensity where taste, appetite, and cravings are constantly seen as a win/lose game where we must assert our self or go without. Appetite is the capacity to know and honor what is appropriate to the situation and circumstance. While appetite commonly relates to food, it primarily shows up as the desire for experience. If we deny appetite, this repression builds up, requiring greater control. If we over indulge, we squander and dissipate our energy. Over time, we realize that moderation actually best serves our growth. Cravings are the more intellectual version of appetite, where we suppress our Thoughts about what we want only to have them return. This creates a vicious cycle where our need for security causes us to be obsessive in our thinking processes. This masculine framework, which encourages intellectual cleverness, is reduced to craving when we brood over our personality desires. The more we cogitate on how we can get what we want, the more our mind energy is scattered and dispersed. Instead, it is best to concentrate on whatever is at hand.

We see examples of this when feminine polarized individuals have difficulty with self-discipline, particularly around food. Sometimes, this manifests as a desire not to be seen as voracious, but secretly, we want all we can get. We end up confusing the desire for quality with the desire for quantity. As a result, we experience cycles of energetic indigestion and constipation. It is ironic that the more we attempt to absorb, the less we can effectively do so. With masculine polarized individuals, the same process can be seen on an intellectual level. Our desire for knowledge (believing it gives us power), over-stimulates our thinking, producing cravings for more control.

We need to learn to balance our thinking with experiential knowing (Body Wisdom, Intuitive Wisdom, Witnessing, and Straight Knowing) to release these cravings. Paradoxically, outer knowledge is best applied from the inside out, rather than the outside in, to facilitate our growth. Taste, appetite and cravings are all being stimulated at this time because of our newly found intellectual focus. We can see examples of this in society by the expansion of restaurants and our national preoccupation with food and eating.

On the idealized level, the sensory triangle is touch, which unifies the feminine (Envy and comfort) and the masculine (Avarice and ease). Our ability to touch someone is commonly idealized as going beyond the physical to touch someone on a spiritual, intellectual, or emotional level. To be touched is to be moved, where a part of us shifts to a new way of experiencing ourselves. While we seek to be moved in this way, it is also the most fearful thing that can occur for us, because we have no control over it. This demonstrates how we are attracted to that which repulses us. It also indicates that when we constantly avoid repulsions, we greatly limit our ability to grow. On the feminine side, Envy drives us to acquire experiences that others idealize, so we can say we have had these experiences. The counterbalancing energy is to stick with what we know is comfortable. On the masculine side, Avarice drives us to acquire possessions so we will not be discounted or marginalized by others’ perceptions of us. The more we have access to money and what it represents, the more powerful others believe we are (and will want to associate with us). The counterbalance to this is ease, where we accomplish what seems prudent, given the potential upsides and downsides. We use repulsion from both extremes to create a balance that works for us.

For example, a feminine polarized individual idealizes the acquisition of experiences to the degree it meets their goal of comfort. This means that they seek others who will contribute to them (with money) in a way that expands both. To the degree these goals are fulfilled, is the same degree to which we are caught up in sensory experiences at the cost of our creative expression. A masculine polarized individual naturally seeks individuals who can provide the sensory experiences and comfort they deny in the pursuit of money. This individual thereby sees the getting of money as necessary to provide the recreation or ease that they need to counterbalance the stress that occurs as part of the pursuit of money. If an individual at either level becomes self-sufficient, and can provide for themselves what they previously sought from a partner, they tend to see through the previous idealizations that kept them attached to fixed ways of operating. These idealizations can also be used to impose a spiritual materialism on a relationship, particularly when we believe envy and avarice are negative, deceitful expressions. In this circumstance, the game becomes about who can deny envy and avarice the most. Of course, this keeps us stuck in the need to touch and be touched by others, even if it is only a limited form of companionship.

For individuals who are not pursuing traditional feminine or masculine gender identity development, it is important that on each level of attraction, we identify the pole that we most use to define our reality. For example, a Disarming defense style man may initially be attached to his sight on the instinctive level, position of appetite on the intellectual level, and envy on the idealized level. A Dynamic defense style woman could be attached to hearing on the instinctive level, cravings on the intellectual level, and project avarice, or the worship of money, into the world. No matter what our situation is, we must first neutralize these attachments by completing the sensory triangle at each level, so we can begin to see what is occurring in our relationships more clearly. As we balance each sensory triangle, we are able to release fixed attachments, positions, and projections that keep us stuck in unconscious attractions. In our experience, the idealization level is the most difficult one for people to acknowledge. It is hard for us to see envy and avarice as aspects that motivate our growth in any way. Actually, it is only when we acknowledge and see envy and avarice as tools to help us better connect with others, that it becomes clear that they can actually be supportive in our development process.

On the creative level, our Aliveness brings more acuteness to our ability to hear. Aliveness empowers us to release any attachments (sight), positions (cravings) and projections (avarice) in our masculine development. Many in the masculine polarity have discovered that their voices become more resonant and they become more sensitive to sound, in general, when they complete their Gender Identity development. For individuals growing in their feminine polarity, we also expand our sight (some would say vision) by embodying our Wisdom. Wisdom is the key to releasing feminine attachments (hearing), positions (appetite) and projections (envy) in our feminine development. It is also interesting to note that smells have acute effects the more conscious we are. Our sensitivity to smell is one of the indicators that we are engaging our creative nature.

What this means is that imbalances between masculine and feminine energies demonstrate as out of balance desires on each level. On the Instinctive level, when we are out of balance between Sensations and Feelings it produces Excitement. On the Intellectual level when we are out of balance quality between Emotions and Thoughts it produces Intensity. On the Idealized level when we are out of balance between Feelings and Emotions it produces Anxiety. These are the three primary indicators of a denial of our gender identity integration of masculine and feminine energies, for every human being. They also indicate where parental imprinting establishes comfort zones within us about how to recreate the same relationships our parents had with each other with our own partners. What we want to substitute for Excitement is Aliveness and Inner Beauty producing Transmutation. What we want to substitute for Intensity is Wisdom and Truth, producing Transformation in how we view our selves and the world. What we want to substitute for Anxiety is Awareness and Goodness producing Transfiguration where we discover a whole world beyond our Personality programming.

Overall, the masculine and feminine sensory processes mirror each other. While we all use smell, taste and touch to anchor our instinctive, intellectual, and idealized attractions respectively, our creativity is used to shift out of our sensory addictions to preferences. The masculine sensory framework evolves from sight, cravings, avarice, and ease on the personality level to hearing/listening when we become conscious. We can then see how the feminine attractions reflect our past denial. This supports the masculine shift to intimacy as we become more conscious. On the masculine side, we use sound and hearing to expand our perceptions of our Self and become a Cosmic Magnet who chooses their attractions. The feminine sensory framework evolves from hearing, appetite, envy, and comfort on the personality level to sight when we become conscious. We can then see how the masculine attractions reflect our past denial. This supports the shift to Autonomy as we become more conscious. Expanding the range of our sensory input on the feminine pole can shift us from unconscious attractions to being a conscious Cultural Leader who chooses their attractions.

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© Copyright 2016, Larry Byram. All Rights Reserved.

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